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J Infect Dis. 1996 Jan;173(1):180-6.

A virulent nonencapsulated Haemophilus influenzae.

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Division of Infectious Disease, Children's Hospital and Medical Center, Seattle, WA 98105, USA.

Erratum in

  • J Infect Dis 1998 Jul;178(1):296.


Nontypeable Haemophilus influenzae strain INT1 was isolated from the blood of a young child with clinical signs of meningitis following acute otitis media. No immunologic or anatomic predisposition of this child for invasive bacterial infection with an unusual organism was documented. Sensitive ELISA proved the absence of intra- or extracellular capsular polysaccharide production by INT1 and Southern blot analysis confirmed the lack of an intact capsulation (cap) gene locus within the chromosome. Nevertheless, INT1 established bacteremia and meningitis in infant and weanling rat models of invasive H. influenzae infection. High-molecular-weight DNA isolated from INT1 was shown to confer an invasive phenotype on transformation of a nonencapsulated, avirulent laboratory strain of H. influenzae. Together these findings imply the presence of one or more as-yet-undiscovered, noncapsular virulence factors of H. influenzae that are capable of mediating invasive disease and resistance to immunologic clearance.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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